valproic acid - oral, Depakene (cont.)
PRECAUTIONS: See also Warning section.Before taking valproic acid, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to divalproex or valproate sodium; or if you have any other allergies.This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this drug, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: liver disease, pancreatitis, certain metabolic disorders (urea cycle disorders).Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: alcohol abuse, bleeding problems, brain disease (dementia), kidney disease, low body water (dehydration), poor nutrition.Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking valproic acid.This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy or cause blurred vision. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness or clear vision until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.Caution is advised when using this drug in the elderly because they may be more sensitive to its side effects, especially drowsiness or tremor.This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy due to the possible risk of birth defects and harm to an unborn baby. Do not suddenly stop taking this medication unless directed by your doctor. Suddenly stopping your medication could cause a severe, possibly fatal, seizure.If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately. If you are planning pregnancy, discuss a plan for managing your condition with your doctor before you become pregnant. Your doctor may switch the type of medication you use during pregnancy. Talk to your doctor for more information.This medication passes into breast milk. While there have been no reports of harm to nursing infants, consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: Your healthcare professionals (e.g., doctor or pharmacist) may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for it. Do not start, stop or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first.Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: certain antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline, nortriptyline, phenelzine), certain benzodiazepines (e.g., clonazepam, diazepam), certain antibiotics (carbapenems such as doripenem, imipenem), guanfacine, mefloquine, other medications for seizure (e.g., carbamazepine, ethosuximide, felbamate, lamotrigine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, rufinamide, topiramate), rifampin, vorinostat, warfarin, zidovudine.Low-dose aspirin, as prescribed by your doctor for specific medical reasons such as heart attack or stroke prevention (usually these dosages are 81-325 milligrams per day), should be continued. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you are using aspirin for any reason.Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you also take drugs that cause drowsiness such as: antihistamines that cause drowsiness (e.g., diphenhydramine), medicine for sleep (e.g., sedatives), muscle relaxants, narcotic pain relievers (e.g., codeine), psychiatric medicines (e.g., phenothiazines such as chlorpromazine), tranquilizers.Check the labels on all your medicines (e.g., cough-and-cold products) because they may contain ingredients that cause drowsiness. Ask your pharmacist about the safe use of those products.This drug may affect certain lab tests (e.g., urine ketones). Make sure laboratory personnel and your doctors know you use this medication.This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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